TiO<inf>2</inf> nanotubes as alternative cathode in microbial fuel cells: Effect of annealing treatment on its performance

  • S. Ait Ali Yahia /
  • L. Hamadou /
  • M. J. Salar-García /
  • A. Kadri /
  • V. M. Ortiz-Martínez /
  • F. J. Hernández-Fernández /
  • A. Pérez De Los Rios /
  • N. Benbrahim
Journal ar
Applied Surface Science
  • Volumen: 387
  • Fecha: 30 November 2016
  • Páginas: 1037-1045
  • ISSN: 01694332
  • Source Type: Journal
  • DOI: 10.1016/j.apsusc.2016.07.018
  • Document Type: Article
  • Publisher: Elsevier B.V.
© 2016 Elsevier B.V.In the present work, amorphous and crystalline TiO2 nanotubes (TiNT) were fabricated via anodization and characterized as an alternative cathode for Microbial Fuel Cells (MFCs). The morphology of TiNT is characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The crystalline structure and chemical composition are examined by X-ray diffraction (XRD) and Energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX). The electrical conductivity characteristics were examined by electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS). MFCs based on the alternative cathodes were evaluated in terms of energy generation and wastewater treatment. The performances of the as-anodized nanotubes and TiNT annealed at 450 °C and at 550 °C were investigated in double-chamber MFCs with carbon rod and graphite granules as anode and polymer inclusion membrane based on ionic liquid as separator. Industrial wastewater was the source of carbon and inoculum for the experiments. The as grown amorphous nanotubes exhibited the best output power density of 15.16 mWm¿2. The results reported here indicate that the specific surface area and the oxygen vacancies of the TiNT cathode can influence the MFCs performance together, because both factors play crucial role in the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR). As-anodized TiNT, due to its higher specific surface provide more active sites for electrode reactions. The final oxygen demand (COD) for all systems achieved a COD removal within the interval 54¿71% after 10 days. This approved the suitability of MFCs for wastewater treatment.

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